Source: Pats RB Michel to open camp on PUP list

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Second-year New England Patriots running back Sony Michel, who underwent arthroscopic knee surgery in this offseason, is opening training camp on the active/physically unable to perform list, a source told ESPN's Field Yates.

Players who open camp on the active/PUP list aren't yet cleared for on-field drills, but their status can change at any time. The Patriots' first practice of training camp is scheduled for Thursday, and players returning from injuries reported to training camp on Sunday, along with rookies.

Michel's knee scope was considered precautionary. The 2018 first-round pick out of Georgia (No. 31 overall) missed most of training camp last year with a knee injury and was sidelined for three games in 2018 due to knee ailments.

The Patriots are deep at running back, having selected Alabama's Damien Harris in the third round of the 2019 draft. Veterans James White, Rex Burkhead and Brandon Bolden are also on the depth chart, along with undrafted rookie Nick Brossette (LSU). When healthy, Michel projects as the No. 1 option, a role he filled in the 2018 playoffs in totaling 71 rushes for 336 yards (4.7 avg.) and six touchdowns.

In addition to Michel, the Patriots placed projected No. 2/3 defensive end Deatrich Wise Jr. on the active/PUP list, along with veteran receiver Demaryius Thomas, core special-teamer Nate Ebner, backup offensive tackle Cole Croston and rookie defensive back Ken Webster (seventh round, Mississippi).

Wise underwent an offseason surgery on his foot, and Thomas is still recovering from an Achilles tear he suffered in December.

Meanwhile, rookie offensive tackle Yodny Cajuste, who was selected in the third round out of West Virginia, is opening training camp on the active/non-football injury list. Cajuste didn't participate in spring practices after reportedly undergoing pre-draft surgery on his quad.

The Patriots are thin at offensive tackle after veteran Jared Veldheer retired in April, with Cajuste and Croston the top backup options to projected starters Isaiah Wynn (left) and Marcus Cannon (right).

Wynn, whom the Patriots selected in the first round of the 2018 draft, missed his rookie season with a torn Achilles. Wynn wasn't placed on the PUP list Sunday, which seems to indicate he is cleared for on-field drills.